By: Shayna Griffith
Since the Food and Drug Administration authorized the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 5 to 11, many adorable videos have surfaced on the internet of kids getting vaccinated, eager to follow in their parents’ footsteps. One of the most notable individuals to take advantage of their new eligibility is none other than Big Bird.
Big Bird, a fictional 6-year-old puppet from the long-running children’s show “Sesame Street,” announced last Saturday that he has been vaccinated, which caused a stir online from conservatives and anti-vaxxers. “I got the COVID-19 vaccine today! My wing is feeling a little sore, but it'll give my body an extra protective boost that keeps me and others healthy," Big Bird Tweeted from his verified account. “Ms. @EricaRHill even said I've been getting vaccines since I was a little bird. I had no idea!"
Alongside Tweets of support and encouragement, many conservatives were upset with the idea of a children’s character endorsing the COVID-19 vaccine. Senator Ted Cruz tweeted in a response to Big Bird, “Government propaganda… for your 5 year old!"
“Brainwashing children who are not at risk of COVID. Twisted,” Lisa Boothe of Fox News tweeted.
However, most Twitter users were supportive of the idea of Big Bird’s vaccination. “Thanks Big Bird for continuing to set such a good example of caring for your community!” Twitter user Mike Anderson wrote, “My daughter gets hers tomorrow and it meant a lot to her to hear that you got yours!”
“Sesame Street” has continued to educate children about the COVID-19 pandemic, talking about masks, staying healthy, and vaccines despite pushback from the right-wing.